550 Million

haulin netMy new read is called Planet India (Mira Kamdar, 2007). It presents a “flat world” caution to America. I have read this before from Thomas Friedman. But it is worth revisiting, if for no other reason than to keep conversations kindled.

American technological, economic, and strategic dominance is being challenged for the first time since the fall of the Soviet Union. Ironically, the communication and information technologies that propelled America to the forefront during the 1990’s are now contributing to the erosion of American dominance. These technologies have created a world where time and space are compressed as never before, where ideas, money, services, and people are constantly in motion, freed from the constraints of national boundaries.

As the book title suggests, the rise of India as a superpower is imminent.

India, with its open society, dynamic economy, its commitment to democratizing the institutions of world order and to creating wealth in a way that is inclusive and sustainable, is forging a compelling alternative paradigm.

This book promotes the 21st century as the Asian century. It focuses on India as a microcosm of the world. The author states: “As goes India, so goes the world.”

Do you know that India is the world’s youngest country?

  • Fifty percent of India’s people are under the age of twenty-five.
  • By 2015, there will be 550 million teenagers in India

Do you know how many Indians speak English today? 550 million.

Do you know that India has 17% of the world’s population, but only 4% of the world’s water supply?

Do you know that 40% of the world’s poor live in India?

India has pockets of affluence scattered among a landscape of challenges.  As we look into the future, is it far-fetched to think that “as India goes, so goes the world?”

Does any of this have any bearing on how we best teach our students to be future-ready?


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